Skip to main content

Full text of "Annual report of the President and Directors of the Albemarle & Chesapeake Canal Company .. [serial]"

See other formats






%\t l^lkmarle if %sapeak 


No. 34 West Main Street 



®mbersiitj) of jaortj Carolina 

Cf)i2! ftoofe toaiS pregenteti 


^3 8t,.<a.6L^a.p. 



P Ql i hwo . Itouu^ii^ t/'^k 





W^t l^lfemarfe # Cljesaj^eak 



git t^rir (General Petting, ^tlb at ^^orfolk. 

DECEMBER 2, 185G. 

N K F L K, Y a. 


Digitized by tine Internet Arciiive 

in 2009 witii funding from 

Ensuring Democracy tiirougii Digital Access (NC-LSTA) 

jtocklolte' lllcttiiig. 

The Annual Meeting of the Stockholders of the Albemarle 
and Chesapeake Canal Compani/, was hekl at their office, at 
Norfolk_, at noon, on Tuesday, 2cl December, 1856. 

On motion, T. L. Smnner, Esq., was called to the chair, 
and A. M. Burt appointed Secretary, 

On motion, the Chairman appointed Messrs. Burt and 
Parksj a Committee to examine proxies, and ascertain the 
amount of stock represented in the meeting. 

The Committee reported: 

Whole number of Shares, ----- 5449 

Entitled to .-.-.. 1852 TOtes. 

Whole number of Shares representeil, - - - 4433 

Entitled to ------- 1250 votes 

On motion, the Report of the Committee was adopted. 

The President submitted the First Annual Report of the 
President and Directors to the Stockholders, with accom- 
panying documents. The report was accepted and ordered 
to be printed. 

The following Resolution was unanimously adopted : 

Eesoloed, That the Act of the General Assembly of Virginia, passed 27th Febru- 
ary, 1856, entitled, "An Act to give greater uniformity to the Charters of The Great 
Bridge Lumber and Canal Company, granted by North Carolina and Virginia," be 
accepted and adopted, and that the change of name of the Company and all other acts 
and proceedings of the Board under and by Virtue of said Act are hereby ratified 
and confirmed. 

The following was also unanimousl}^ adopted: 

Resolved, That the number of Directors now 'to bo elected for the ensuing year 
shall be nine; but that the number to be elected at next annual meeting shall be 
five, unless tbe meeting shall at that time resolve to elect a different number. 

The meeting then proceeded to vote by ballot for Presi- 
dent of the Company for the ensuing year. On counting 
the votes, it was found that all votes cast, being twelve 
hundred and fifty in number, were for Marshall Parks, who 
was thereupon declared unanimously elected. 

The meeting then proceeded to vote by ballot for nine 
Directors for the ensuing year. On counting the votes, it 
was found that all the votes cast, twelve hundred and fifty 


in number, were for the following gentlemen, wlio were 
thereupon declared duly elected^ viz: 

T. L. SKINNER, of N. G. A. M. BURT, of New York. 




The following Kesolution was adopted: 

Besolved, That the next Annual Meeting of the Stockholders, be held on the 
Wednesday of the week of the Fair of the Seaboard Agricultural Society, if the 
same be held during the month of November, 1857; if not, then upon the second 
Wednesday of that month. 

On motion, the meeting adjourned. 

T. L. Skinner, Chairman. 
A. M. Burt, Secretary. 


The Board of Directors of the Albemarle and Chesapeake 
Canal Company^ respectfully report to the Stockholders as 
follows : 

The surveys for the Company's Canal were commenced in 
July, 1855, and the line was finally located early in the 
Spring of 1856. 

The line of Canal^ as finally adopted, is in length as fol- 
lows : 

In North Carolina, 5,65 miles. 

In Virginia, 8.45 " 

Making a total of. 14.10 miles. 

which is the length of independent Canal, exclusive of the 
contemplated improvement of the natural water courses con- 
nected by the Canals. 

The whole of the Virginia line, and the greater part of 
the North Carolina line, lie through a very loiu sioamp and 
marshy country^ mostly under water at all times. The con- 
struction of the Canal, therefore, could only be successfully 
prosecuted by the use of Steam Under- Water Excavators or 
Dredges. Indeed, it is very doubtful whether it would have 
y been profitable to do the work by any other means. Accord- 
ingly the energetic contractors, Messrs. Courtright, Bar- 
ton & Co., have already placed upon the line seven of these 
costly machines, and are now building two more of greatly 
increased power, which will be in operation during the pres- 
ent month. There will then be nine steam dredges at work 
on the line, distributed as follows: 


On the North Carolina Section, 2 

North Landing, East End of Virginia Section 2 

Old's Point, Middle of Virginia Section, 2 

Great Bridge, West End of Virginia Section 2 

LockpTt, below Great Bridge, 1 


• The commencement of the work was very much delayed 
by the prevalence of yellow fever last year at Norfolk and 
Portsmouth. By reason of this delay, the contractors 
had not sufficient time to give their men the practicable ex- 
perience in working the dredges necessary to their successful 
operation. The consequence was, that during the sickly 
months of this season, a sufficient number of experienced 
men could not be obtained to work the machines ; the work, 
therefore, progressed quite slowly, and at a great sacrifice 
on the part of the contractors, who resolved to continue the 
work, even at a temporary Ic^"-'. Another great and unex- 
pected obstacle to the progress of the work heretofore, has 
been the large number of cypress stumps and logs which 
have been encountered in the excavation, and which, being 
entirely under water_, were very difficult to remove. These 
appear to be most abundant upon the margins of the streams, 
and will probably be less frequent as the dredges leave the 
rivers. By experience, also^ tlie workmen have become bet- 
ter informed in the management of tliese obstructions, and 
in future less delay is anticipated from this cause. 

Up to the present time, six of the dredges have been em- 
ployed excavating Canal^ and the seventh in digging the pit 
for the Lock. The first dredge commenced work on the 13th 
of February last ; the sixth one about the 1st of May last ; 
and the average time the dredges have worked is about seven 
months. The length of Canal completed at the different 
points on the line amounts to two miles. 

The two dredges em})loyed u})on this section, beginning 
at Cedar Bay, in Currituck Sound, have completed a chan- 
nel through Long Point (Piney Island) to Coinjock Bay^ 

and thence crossing the Road leading to Church's Island, 
are now rapidly approaching the County Road to Powell's 
Point. It is expected that they will cross this road by the 
1st of March next, and that within the ensuing year, the 
entire Canal across this peninsula will be completed. 

The two Dredges employed at North Landing, in this 
County, were the first that were put in operation on the whole 
line ; they have met with great and unforseen delays in con- 
sequence of cypress stumps, roots and sunken logs. Neverthe- 
less, they have made very gratifying progress, and now that 
the men have become more familiar with their work, we per- 
ceive no reason why their progress should not be more rapid 
than heretofore. These machines have thus far had to work 
on, or near the Creek, which forms the head waters of the 
North Landing River, but, as they are now about to deflect 
from the stream, we expect them to meet with fewer obsta- 
cles and delays. 


1. Great Bridge. There are also two Dredges employed at 
this point. 

Here, also, great and vexatious delays have occurred from 
cypress stumps, &c. Beside this, operations here were com- 
menced at so late a period, that not much progress could be 
made previous to the sickly season, which caused consider- 
able delay also ; upon this account, it would undoubtedly 
have been economy, on the part of the contractors, tempora- 
rily, to have suspended the work at this point ; but not to 
give the enemies of the work even a pretext for exultation, 
they determined to continue it, even at a great loss to them- 

The Board of Direction feel that they cannot too highly 
estimate this spirit on the part of the Contractors. 

The work is now being vigorously prosecuted, and, for 
reasons before stated, is expected to go forward with rapid- 


2. The Ship Lock. The locality of this Lock is at the 
junction of the Canal with the Elizabeth River, about three- 
fourths of a mile below Grreat Bridge. The Lock is to be 
220 feet long by 40 feet wide, in the clear ; and the founda- 
tion is to be placed sufficiently low to give a draft of 8 feet 
water. I^^This Lock, when completed, will be the largest on 
tlie Atlantic Coast and among the largest in the United States. 
Steam Propellors carrying 500 tons cargo may pass easily. 

One Steam Excavator is employed in excavating the pit 
of the Lock. About one-half of the excavation is noAv com- 
pleted. A large and powerful Pump, and two Steam En- 
gines — one for the Pump, and the other for the Pile-Driver 
— have been provided. 

The Stone are mostly dressed, and about three-fifths de- 
livered on the work. 

The Piles and Foundation Timbers are mostly out and 
ready for delivery. 

o. Old's Point. Midway on the line of the Virginia Canal, 
in the swamp, preparations are noAv making for putting in 
operation tioo larger and more poioerfid Dredges. The 
distance now remaining on the Virginia line, between 
the foremost Dredge at Great Bridge, and the foremost one 
at North Landing, is 7im miles. These two neAv machines 
are intended^ one to work each way from this point, and to 
work upon the same side of Canal as those two foremost 
Dredges, tlius making four Dredges all at work upon the 
same side of the Canal. Thus it will be seen, that each of 
the four will have only about If miles to excavate in order 
to effect a union between the waters ol" North and Elizabeth 

From tlie Statement of the Tieasurer, it will be seen that 
the amount of capital stock subs(;ribed is as follows : 

By the County of Currituck, M4,000 

By individuals, 504,500 

Leaving unsubscribed, 251,500 

Capital Stock, $80e,000 


There has been received in cash for stock paid up in full, 

and in labor, materials and county bonds, the sum of $134,900 00 
Instalments on account stock not paid up in full 7,930 07 

The expenditures and liabilities of the Company for the 
fiscal year ending 30th Sept. were as follows: viz. 

Construction, $80,000 00 

Engineers, 9,382 41 

Office, 486 34 

Contingent 3,829 84 

Land Damages, 183 65 

Property, Steam Excavators, &c 63,000 00 

Commission, 1,800 00 

$158,582 24 
Since your last annual meeting, the General Assembly of 
Virginia has passed an Act authorizing the change of the 
name of the Company, from "The Great Bridge Lumber and 
Canal Company," to^ "The Albemarle and Chesapeake 
Canal Company" ; and as the Act of North Carolina had 
already conferred the necessary authority, the change was 
at once made. The Act also conferred upon the Company 
certain additional powers, which were deemed necessary to 
accomplish the purpose expressed in the title of the Act, 
which is as follows: "An Act to give greater uniformity to 
the Charters of the Great Bridge Lumber and Canal Com- 
pany granted by North Carolina and Vrginia." The said 
Act was passed February 27th, 1856, and a coi3y thereof is 
to be found in the Acts of Assembly, passed in 1855-56, 
page 113. 

Respectfully Submitted^, 

By order of the Board, 

.; President. 




This book must not be 
taken from the Library